The purpose of the College’s policies on transfer of credit, credit by examination, and assessment of prior learning for credit for undergraduate students is to facilitate degree completion while maintaining the academic integrity of a Fort Lewis College degree.
It is the student’s responsibility to submit official transcripts for any and all previously attempted or earned transfer credit as well as any additional documentation required when a transcript is from an international institution, to request official score reports for all examinations to be sent, and to present the required documents for assessment of prior learning. These documents should be submitted before the first term of attendance to ensure the student and advisors have full knowledge of a student’s progress toward degree completion.
Fort Lewis College only allows demonstration of prior learning for military service and independent study.
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Transfer Credit Policies
Courses are generally accepted in transfer to Fort Lewis College if they are regular, college-level academic courses completed with grades of C- or better at an institution of higher education accredited by one of the following regional accrediting agencies:
- New England Association of Schools and Colleges
- Middle States Commission on Higher Education
- Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association
- Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
- Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
- Western Association of Schools and Colleges
Courses that will not transfer include those that are not college level, such as remedial and developmental; non-academic courses such as vocational, career exploration, cooperative education, internships, independent study, workshops, and practicums. Courses with grades of D+ or lower or with the grades pass/fail, credit/no credit, or satisfactory/unsatisfactory will not transfer, with the following exceptions: courses with grades of pass, credit, or satisfactory may be accepted if they are physical education (PE) courses or if the student demonstrates that the course could not be taken under the normal A-F grading mode and the sending institution verifies that the grade awarded is equivalent to a C- or better.
Transfer credits more than 10 years old will not be automatically accepted and require special approval to be applied toward general education, major, auxiliary, or minor requirements.
Courses accepted in transfer become part of the credits completed and are not used in grade point average (GPA) calculations. The Fort Lewis College GPA is based on work completed at Fort Lewis College only.
Lower division credits are freshman and sophomore-level credits (courses numbered 100 and 200, respectively, at Fort Lewis College). Upper division credits are junior and senior-level credits (courses numbered 300 or 400, respectively, at Fort Lewis College). Lower and upper division designation is based on the transfer institution’s lower and upper division designation. Course equivalency may be granted for a lower division course from another college that is an upper division course at Fort Lewis College, but the course will not count as upper division credit at Fort Lewis College. Credits earned at a two-year college cannot be used to meet Fort Lewis College’s credit requirement in upper division courses. In cases where a course being transferred does not have a Fort Lewis College equivalent, the course will post with the appropriate departmental prefix and a “T” identifier within the course number (for example, Math T104).
The maximum number of credits that may transfer toward a baccalaureate degree at Fort Lewis College is 90. Within these 90 credits, the maximum number of credits that may transfer from an accredited two-year college is 60.
For academic program purposes, the catalog in effect for graduation requirements for a transfer student is the catalog in effect when the student transfers to Fort Lewis College. Previous catalogs may be used only when specified by a particular articulation.
Students transferring from a Colorado public institution to Fort Lewis College benefit from a system of policies developed by the Colorado Department of Higher Education to facilitate the transfer of credit among the state’s institutions of higher education.
Transfer of General Education Courses
Colorado’s gtPathways program allows students who successfully complete guaranteed lower division general education courses at a two-year or four-year Colorado public institution of higher education to apply that credit toward the lower division general education requirements at another Colorado public institution in all majors unless a specific statewide articulation agreement exists. Students must earn a C- grade or better in each course in order for the course to transfer. Details of the guaranteed general education curriculum may be found on the Colorado Department of Higher Education website.
Transfer of an Associate of Arts or Associate of Science Degree
Students who complete an Associate of Arts (A.A) or Associate of Science (A.S.) degree with 60 transferable credits will transfer with junior standing, provided that the student has earned a C- or better in each course, and will be able to complete a baccalaureate degree by taking 60 additional credits, unless the Colorado Commission on Higher Education has approved additional requirements.
State policy facilitates transfer of Associate of Arts (A.A) or Associate of Science (A.S.) degrees into specific majors at Colorado public four-year colleges/universities through statewide articulation agreements, other transfer agreements, and institutional transfer guides.
Statewide articulation agreements exist between Colorado public two-year colleges and Fort Lewis College in the following majors: Anthropology, Biology, Business Administration, Chemistry, Early Childhood Education, Economics, Elementary Education, English, Geology, History, Mathematics, Music, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology and Human Services, Spanish, Studio Art and Theatre. These agreements are published on the Colorado Department of Higher Education website.
Other transfer agreements exist between Colorado public two-year colleges and Fort Lewis College in Engineering. This agreement is published on the Colorado Department of Higher Education website.
Institutional transfer guides exist between Colorado public community/junior colleges and Fort Lewis College in all majors not covered by a statewide articulation or other transfer agreement. These guides are published on the Fort Lewis College website.
Students who transfer to Fort Lewis College with credit from an out-of-state college/university will have their courses evaluated on a course-by-course basis. All out-of-state Associate of Arts (A.A) or Associate of Science (A.S) degrees must be approved by the Coordinator of General Education in order to qualify for a waiver of the Liberal Arts Core requirements. A list of institutions which have already been approved/not approved for the waiver may be found here: http://www.fortlewis.edu/registrar/TransferInformationandPolicies/NonColoradoAAASDegreeTransferPolicy.aspx
At the time of transfer, an inquiry may be made to the Registrar’s Office regarding the status of any A.A. or A.S. degree not appearing on approved/not approved lists.
Students submitting coursework or a degree from an international institution will have that work reviewed on a case-by-case basis to determine transferability.
With the exception of students transferring credit as part of a Fort Lewis College study abroad (USAC, ISEP) experience, students submitting transcripts from international institutions must follow these procedures:
- Request the international institution to send an official transcript to Fort Lewis College.
- If not in English, send copy of transcript and course descriptions to University Language Services (ULS) for translation.
- Send ULS translation report to Fort Lewis College.
- Apply for credential evaluation by the World Education Services (WES) and submit copies of required documentation as required by WES for the country of the institution. Select “Course by Course” evaluation. Request WES to send the report to the Registrar’s Office at Fort Lewis College.
The inquiry/appeals process applies to transfer appeals from Colorado public colleges as well as all other accredited colleges.
The student may appeal:
- A decision regarding the transferability of a specific course(s);
- A decision regarding the way in which a specific course(s) transferred;
- The institution’s failure to provide a transcript evaluation within the designated 30 calendar day period
- The appeal must be submitted in writing to the Registrar’s Office. The decisions regarding course transferability and/or placement made in the initial transcript evaluation will be binding if the student fails to file a written letter of appeal within 15 calendar days:
- The Registrar’s Office and appropriate department chair will review the written appeal submitted by the student.
- The appropriate department chair will have 30 calendar days to review the student’s appeal. The Registrar’s Office will inform the student in writing of the department’s decision on the appeal, including the rationale for that decision. In addition, the student shall be informed in writing about the process for appealing the appeal decision should the student feel that reasonable doubt exists about the validity of the appeal decision.
- If the Registrar’s Office fails to inform the student of the available appeal options, the departmental decision shall be null and void. The student’s request prevails and cannot be overturned by any institutional administrator or committee.
- An opportunity to appeal the first appeal decision:
- The student may appeal the first appeal decision by writing the Vice President for Academic Affairs at Fort Lewis College. The appeal must be filed within 15 calendar days of the postmark date of the letter notifying the student of the departmental decision. If the student fails to file an appeal within this time period, the original decision shall be binding.
- Fort Lewis College must hear and reach a decision on the appeal within 15 calendar days after the appeal is filed.
- The student will be notified in writing by Fort Lewis College of its decision regarding the transfer appeal and the rationale for the decision. In addition, the institution shall inform the student that the student may appeal the decision by writing the governing board.
- An opportunity to appeal the institutional appeal decision:
- The student may appeal the institutional decision by writing the Vice President for Academic Affairs. The appeal must be filed within five calendar days of the postmark date of the letter notifying the student of the institutional decision. If the student fails to file an appeal within this time period, the institutional decision shall be binding.
- The governing board staff shall review and reach a decision on the appeal within five calendar days after the appeal is filed.
- The student will be notified in writing by the governing board of its decision regarding the transfer appeal and the rationale for the decision. In addition, the institution shall inform the student that the student may appeal the decision by writing the Department of Higher Education. The appeal must be filed within five calendar days of the postmark date of letter notifying the student of the governing board’s decision.
- Department of Higher Education Procedures for Resolution of Student Transfer Disputes
The appeals process is to be initiated by the student after all remedies have been exhausted without resolution of the issue at the institutional level.
An appeal is initiated by the student informing the Colorado Department of Higher Education in writing of the situation and the reason for the appeal. Complete instructions regarding this level of appeal may be found on the Colorado Department of Higher Education website.
Credit by Examination
Institutional Credit by Examination
Credit for some courses may be earned through institutional examinations. This procedure is limited to regular catalog courses and may not apply to such courses as special topics, independent study, practicums, or internships.
The student should apply to the appropriate department chair, who may assign a faculty member to administer the exam. The chair will ensure that the reason(s) for the examination is legitimate, and, if the course is an advanced one, that the student has the necessary prerequisites.
A student may not take a special exam for a course that he has already taken in the regular fashion, regardless of the grade earned previously unless it was an audit grade. Additionally, a student may not take a special exam for a course for which he/she is currently registered.
The fee for credit by examination is listed in the current year Tuition and Fee schedule and must be paid before the exam is given. A proctoring fee may also be assessed.
External Credit by Examination
College credit is also awarded for exceptional performance on tests administered by the following external testing agencies. To qualify for college credit based on test performance, the test must be completed prior to taking any collegiate coursework at Fort Lewis College in the same area.
Fort Lewis College participates in the Advanced Placement Program of the College Board. Under this program, outstanding secondary school students may take certain college-level courses in their own high schools. Satisfactory scores on an examination administered and graded by the College Board are forwarded to Fort Lewis College and may serve as a basis for credit and/or advanced placement. For additional information, students should consult their high school counselor or write to the College Board, Box 592, Princeton, NJ 08550.
Fort Lewis College has adopted a policy whereby up to a maximum of 24 credits may be granted on the basis of appropriate scores on the general examinations of the College Level Examination Program (CLEP). Here is a complete listing of Fort Lewis College’s CLEP policies.
The International Baccalaureate is a comprehensive course of study for academically talented high school students in select high schools throughout the world. The number of credits awarded for successful completion of an IB diploma program will be a minimum of 24 semester credits. Questions about the IB program should be directed to International Baccalaureate North America, 475 Riverside Dr, 16th Floor, New York, NY 10115, (212) 696-4464.
The DSST exams were developed to enable schools to award credit to students for knowledge equivalent to that which is learned by students taking the course. The exams have been approved by the American Council on Education (ACE). The ACE provides both a recommended passing score and a recommended number of credits that could be awarded to successful students. With these recommendations in mind, Fort Lewis College awards the following credit for selected DSST exams.
Credit for Prior Learning
Prior learning is defined as academic knowledge gained through work experience, military service, community involvement, or independent study.
Fort Lewis College only allows demonstration of prior learning for military service and independent study.
Learning through independent study can be demonstrated through credit by examination.
Learning through military service can be demonstrated by submitting a written request for an evaluation of credits for military service to the Registrar’s Office. The DD 214 form, Joint Services Transcript, and the credit recommendation from the American Council on Education must be attached to the request.